Bird flu in Tripura, culling starts Tuesday

April 7th, 2008 - 4:13 pm ICT by admin  

Agartala, April 7 (IANS) There has been an outbreak of bird flu in Tripura with a general alert sounded across the northeastern state, officials Monday said. The state will cull around 20,000 birds starting Tuesday. “We have received a report from the High Security Animal Diseases Laboratory (HSADL) in Bhopal, preliminarily confirming bird flu in Mohanpur village, 150 km north of here, in Dhalai district,” said Aghore Debbarma, Tripura’s agriculture and animal resource development (ARD) minister.

“Massive preventive measures have been taken to check the spread of the avian influenza virus while the culling of birds would start Tuesday,” the minister told IANS.

Over 3,000 chickens, ducks, crows and other birds had first fallen sick and then reportedly died in the past two weeks.

Top officials and experts led by ARD department director Ashim Roy Burman have rushed to the village and over 100 personnel are getting ready to start culling 20,000 birds.

Debbarma said: “Culling activities would be carried out within a radius of five km of Mohanpur and seven adjoining villages - Billaschara, Noagaon, Mayachari, Halhuli, Harerkhola, Marachara and Kamalpur.”

Movement of vehicles to and from these villages has been restricted.

The minister said for getting absolute confirmation of the bird flu virus, fresh blood samples of dead birds were being sent to Bhopal and other national laboratories.

The state forest department has also asked its officials to keep a watch on Tripura’s 10 big water bodies where migratory birds from India and abroad are currently breeding.

The state government has banned the sale and consumption of poultry and poultry products in the affected and adjoining villages of Dhalai district. The authorities also announced compensation for affected people and poultry owners.

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